Christopher Gerbi

Google Scholar profile (publications) | Software

My research focuses on rheology – the mechanics of how rocks and ice deform – and how geophysical methods record material properties. Some of the overarching questions I pursue include:

  • How does strain localization initiate?
  • What role does stress heterogeneity play in material behavior?
  • How can we best model radar and seismic wave propagation through snow and ice?
  • Is microstructure a significant control on strength in streaming ice?

I approach these questions using chemical and textural microanalysis, numerical models, geophysics (radar), geochronology, and, field observations.  In addition to rheological questions, I am interested in applying microanalytical techniques to any suitable problem, within or outside the Earth and Climate Sciences.

As an affiliate of the Maine Center for Research in STEM Education, which offers the Master of Science in Teaching degree, I am involved in education research and professional development, particularly as it relates to Earth and Climate Sciences.

At present, I serve as Associate Dean for Research in our College of Earth, Life, and Health Sciences. I stay active in research projects but am not taking on new graduate students at this time.

Our research teams have developed several software packages to support our inquiry into elastic and viscous deformation as well as the radar and seismic wave propagation.

ThermoElastic and Seismic Analysis (TESA) Toolbox Calculates the elastic response to changes in temperature and macroscale loading. Includes seismic anisotropy calculations and visualization.

Power-law Creep (PLC) Toolbox Calculates the viscous response to macroscale loading.

Seismic and Radar Toolbox (SeidarT) Calculates seismic and radar wave propagation. Designed initially for glaciology, this scale- and material-independent tool is applicable to any geological setting.